An analysis of the topic of the zulu wars

Most of what Chelmsford told the Queen was a pack of lies. He formed new age-set regiments and even succeeded in equipping his regiments with a few antiquated muskets and other outdated firearms.

Why did the zulu war happen

Various interactions with these followed an expansionist policy. On 11 January, they crossed the border and invaded Zululand. Her Majesty's Government have arrived, it is my duty to impress upon you that in supplying these reinforcements it is the desire of Her Majesty's Government not to furnish means for a campaign of invasion and conquest, but to afford such protection as may be necessary at this juncture to the lives and property of the colonists. He suggested a compromise with the Boers and the meeting broke up without clear resolutions. This heroic defence was rewarded by Queen Victoria's government with no fewer than 11 Victoria Crosses, and was later immortalised by the film Zulu , directed by Cy Endfield. This dangerous mixture of self-confidence and contempt for their foes infected the whole British force. One senior officer wrote: 'Bromhead is a great favourite in his regiment and a capital fellow at everything except soldiering In , the British took over Natal and Zululand. The British forces intended for the defense of Natal had already been on the march with the intention to attack the Zulu kingdom. Chelmsford's decision not to set up the British camp defensively, contrary to established doctrine, and ignoring information that the Zulus were close at hand were decisions that the British were soon to regret. Indeed, the historiography on the events of this war is now remarkably complete; we know more about the military events of this war than perhaps any other. The British suffered grave defeats at Isandlwana, where 1, British soldiers were killed or wounded, and at Hlobane Mountain, but on March 29 the tide turned in favor of the British at the Battle of Khambula.

However, the arrival of the news of the defeat at Isandlwana in London on February 11—one of the major shocks to British prestige in the 19th century—galvanized the British government into a full-scale campaign to save face.

Chelmsford knew nothing, Col.

Boer zulu war

He planned to attack them on 24 January, but on learning of the disaster at Isandlwana, he decided to withdraw back to the Kraal. But the terms which you have dictated to the Zulu king, however necessary to relieve the colony in future from an impending and increasing danger, are evidently such as he may not improbably refuse, even at the risk of war; and I regret that the necessity for immediate action should have appeared to you so imperative as to preclude you from incurring the delay which would have been involved in consulting Her Majesty's Government upon a subject of so much importance as the terms which Cetywayo should be required to accept before those terms were actually presented to the Zulu king. Cetshwayo , who became king of the Zulus in , was unwilling to submit to British hegemony and assembled a well-disciplined army of 40, to 60, men. No prohibition was sent and could hardly be expected to have been, for Hicks Beach had no means of knowing the urgency of the events that were in train. They annihilated the central British column at Isandlwana, killing British soldiers and taking nearly 1, rifles and ammunition. The British government in London had not been fully briefed by Frere about the intended attack on Zululand and initially was not overwhelmingly in the mood for war. In January Hicks Beach wrote to Bartle Frere: "I may observe that the communications which had previously been received from you had not entirely prepared them" Her Majesty's Government "for the course which you have deemed it necessary to take. He turned against the Zulus with vengeance, saying he had come into possession of "the most incontrovertible, overwhelming and clear evidence" never previously disclosed, for supporting the claims of the Boers. It has often been posited that the British Empire provides an example of greedy capitalists dispossessing indigenous peoples in their search for new markets and raw materials, 1 yet whenever one looks into the particular circumstances of an episode of expansion, it is very difficult to isolate a viable economic motive. But the Zulu conflict was unique in that it was to be the last pre-emptive war launched by the British, prior to the recent campaign in Iraq. An hour later, as the hard-pressed British defenders fought for their lives, a portion of Chelmsford's force at Mangeni Falls received word that the camp was in danger of being overrun. Though the present aspect of affairs is menacing in a high degree, I can by no means arrive at the conclusion that war with the Zulus should be unavoidable, and I am confident that you, in concert with Sir H. Frere had been sent out to to Cape Town with the specific task of grouping South Africa's hotch-potch of British colonies, Boer republics and independent black states into a Confederation of South Africa. This woman was also carried back, and is supposed to have been put to death likewise; the young man with her although guilty in Zulu eyes of a most heinous crime, punishable with death, was safe from them on English soil; they did not touch him.

He had concluded that the powerful Zulu kingdom stood in the way of this, and so was receptive to Shepstone's arguments that King Cetshwayo and his Zulu army posed a threat to the peace of the region. Thus one month after the British invasion, only their left flank column remained militarily effective, and it was too weak to conduct a campaign alone.

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At 11am, by which time the 1, men remaining in the camp had been swelled by reinforcements, mounted scouts stumbled upon the concealed Zulu impi. By 20 January - hampered by minor skirmishes and poor tracks - Chelmsford's column had only advanced 11 miles to the rocky lower slopes of a distinctive, sphinx-like hill called Isandlwana.

However, the British pressured him into withdrawing, which he did shortly afterwards. The Victorian public was dumbstruck by the news that 'spear-wielding savages' had defeated the well equipped British Army.

There, lying in wait just five miles from the exposed camp at Isandlwana, were 20, Zulu warriors. Langalibalele had been falsely accused of rebellion in and, following a charade of a trial, was found guilty and imprisoned on Robben Island.

The Transvaal Boers objected but as long as the Zulu threat remained, found themselves between two threats; they feared that if they took up arms to resist the British annexation actively, King Cetshwayo and the Zulus would take the opportunity to attack.

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